Pangandaman1 PANGANDAMAN


April 24, 2024 People's Journal 86 views

BUDGET and Management Secretary Amenah F. Pangandaman has reiterated the government’s commitment to strengthening the healthcare sector by addressing the needs and concerns of healthcare workers.

“We are dedicated to ensuring that our healthcare workers are equipped to serve our people, especially during times of crisis. This includes the provision of health emergency allowances (HEA) to support their invaluable contributions to public health,” Pangandaman said.

The DBM chief made the assurance during a recent meeting with officials of the Alliance of Health Workers, led by their president Robert T. Mendoza.

Pangandaman disclosed that the DBM has already allocated a substantial sum for Public Health Emergency Benefits and Allowances (PHEBA), amounting to P91.283 billion spanning from 2021 to 2023.

These funds, she said, were disbursed to the Department of Health (DOH) in staggered releases, with P19.962 billion designated for the ongoing year, 2024.

“The PHEBA allocation encompasses various benefits aimed at assisting healthcare workers, including health emergency allowances, special risk allowances, compensation for COVID-19 sickness and death, as well as additional benefits like meals, accommodation, and transportation allowances,” Pangandaman explained.

Despite the significant allocation, only P64 billion has been disbursed by the DOH, prompting the DBM to urge expedited computation of HEA claims in arrears.

Pangandaman stressed the imperative of transparency and accountability, suggesting the implementation of a HEA mapping system to facilitate tracking and expeditious settlement of arrears.

She also underscored the government’s steadfast commitment to enhancing healthcare services, in alignment with President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr.‘s Eight-Point Socio-economic Agenda.

“Support for the health sector is paramount in realizing President Marcos Jr.’s vision of a Bagong Pilipinas where every Filipino has access to quality primary healthcare,” Pangandaman pointed out.

“The DBM remains steadfast in ensuring the welfare of our healthcare workers and the entire healthcare sector through transformative budget and management initiatives,” she added.